Sunday, May 11, 2014

Pregnancy From the Outside

I was talking to my mom recently who always makes it a point to ask how I'm doing and feeling, pregnancy and otherwise. Having last seen me when I had the I-just-ate-a-cheeseburger pooch, she has yet to see me in all my current, 7th-month glory.

Mom: "I'll bet you're pretty big!"

Me: "Yeah."

Mom: "I'll bet your boobs are really big."

Me: "Yeah."

Mom: "Jacob probably enjoys looking at you."

Me: *Sarcastic snort* "Yeah."

I relayed that conversation to Jacob so I could have a self-deprecating giggle and, of course, fish for compliments. The only problem was that Jacob is unfailing honest and when he tries to sugar-coat I call bull-shit immediately. But his honest answer hit the nail on the head about the true nature of pregnancy (and gave me something to ramble about and obsess over).

"Pregnancy from the outside is beautiful. To look at you, you're gorgeous. But I witness everything that goes into being pregnant: the throwing up, you're hawking loogies every 30 seconds, most of the time you're in your pj's, you also have to deal with taking care of Zoey so you don't have energy to take a shower every day, you're tired, and bitchy." Ok, I added the bitchy part; he was nice enough to not mention it. Sometimes I'm surprised by my husband's insightful insight.

On the outside, pregnancy is beautiful, gorgeous, voluptuous, a miracle, blah, blah, blah. And celebrities who artfully cradle their baby-bumps on magazine covers and spout that they've never felt more beautiful, sexual, self-confident, and that they absolutely love being pregnant are full of shit and their lies and embellishments give the rest of us pregnant schlubs a bad wrap. Every once in awhile, someone will come out and speak a little bit of truth, like Kelly Clarkson who eloquently said, "Everyone tells you that you glow and your hair is pretty and your nails are pretty. That is total crap. My nails are short, my hair still falls out, and I have no glow unless it's something left over from a bad throw-up. I'm so happy I'm pregnant, I just wish he or she wasn't trying to kill me."

Looking at those professionally shot, creatively airbrushed pictures of people we already sort of look up to makes it hard for us to imagine Angelina Jolie with her head in the toilet or Heidi Klum applying hemorrhoid cream. So not that it makes me happy to know that Princess Katherine had severe morning sickness kinda does.

My pregnancy with Zoey was different in this regard in a few ways. Jacob still witnessed endless days of me "refunding," just as many if not more loogies, was subjected to equal amounts of emotional and crazy, and I drank gallons upon gallons of milk which only compounded any already-present digestive issues. And the sucker married me during this pregnancy! And wanted to get me pregnant again! But I worked full-time until delivery so I pretty much *had* to make myself presentable. Oh, and we had our wedding day so I made slightly more of an effort for that.

I'm also a lot busier this pregnancy than I was with Zoey. Since I'm not working in an office, I'm on my feet and moving around a lot more (and that's not counting the two full flights of stairs I need to climb), and doing more physical activities like cleaning, laundry, my every-30-seconds trip to the bathroom, and whatever Zoey might need help with at any given moment. In addition, I've kept up with my social life, however minimal it might be, and have been painting and setting up our house, all of which attributes to the shower-lacking, pj-sporting mentioned above.

I don't know how other husbands and fathers feel during their partner's pregnancies aside from the horrifying "16 & Pregnant" show which seems to be on constant rotation when I'm pregnant, but I know I have one of the good ones. We shook on two - a legally-binding contract - and if nothing else, pregnancy from the inside is the best birth control you can get. I guess all of the pictures and "pregnancy from the outside" is just a bonus, and I should make more of an effort to be pregnant from the outside for the people who truly matter: my book club. Just kidding, of course I mean Jacob.